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Children are suffering. These companies are profiting.
Thousands of children have been separated from their families, and many more have been subject to inhuman conditions as part of the Trump administration's anti-immigrant crackdown at the southern border.
Just last week, lawyers reported that 250 children were subject to "neglect and mistreatment" at a border patrol station in El Paso, Texas. The group included infants who allegedly were placed into the care of other children, according to a girl detained at the facility.
A Border Patrol agent came in our room with a 2-year-old boy and asked us, "Who wants to take care of this little boy?" Another girl said she would take care of him, but she lost interest after a few hours and so I started taking care of him yesterday.
Lawyers said the 2-year-old "had wet his pants and had no diaper and was wearing a mucus-smeared shirt." The children at the facility included those who arrived at the border alone and those who had been separated from their parents or other caregivers.
Other migrants are stuck on the Mexican side of the border in intolerable conditions because the Trump administration has "metered" the number of asylum claims it will process at official points of entry each day. A man from El Salvador and his two-year-old daughter died while crossing the Rio Grande, desperate to escape a holding camp in Mexico with little food and temperatures above 110 degrees.
This year, six migrant children have died in U.S. custody.
A migrant on the U.S. side of the border reported hundreds of people being held in one overcrowded cage with an overflowing bathroom.
“They don’t have the humanitarian conditions for people to be there,” said Gary, a 33-year-old migrant from Siguatepeque, Honduras, who would only give his first name. “There were more than 200 of us in a single cage — seated on the floor, standing, however we could fit.” He said the stench inside overflowing toilets was so bad it made him gag and caused children to vomit.
But the only thing several large consulting firms smell is money.
A review by Popular Information of federal contracting databases reveals that Booz Allen Hamilton, Deloitte, and PricewaterhouseCoopers have inked over $175 million in contracts with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) since Trump took office.
These companies have continued to profit from Trump's anti-immigrant crackdown over the protests of many of their employees. The companies have gotten more business after McKinsey, one of the largest consulting firms, announced last year it would no longer do business with ICE.
Deloitte: $103,899,307.61 in contracts with ICE during the Trump administration
Deloitte Global CEO Punit Renjen promotes himself and his company as a champion of refugees.
But, since January 2017, Deloitte has inked over $100 million in contracts with ICE, an agency that is part of the Trump administration's efforts to dramatically limit the number of refugees admitted into the United States.
The details of Deloitte's work with ICE is mostly opaque. But Deloitte signed over $4 million in contracts which directly involved "detention compliance and removals." The rest of the contracts relate to "mission support" in Washington, Orlando, and Dallas.
In July 2018, hundreds of Deloitte employees signed a petition calling on the company to stop doing business with ICE, citing "moral objections" to the work. The employees urged Deloitte to consider how "its services and offerings...contribute to ongoing injustice." The employees also called on Deloitte "to take a public stance against the Trump administration policy that resulted in migrant children being separated from their parents."
Since the employees sent management their petition, Deloitte has entered into an additional $44 million worth of contracts with ICE.
Jesse Tyler Ferguson, an actor best known for his role on Modern Family, is an outspoken opponent of Trump's immigration policy and an advocate for refugees.
But Ferguson, along with his co-star Eric Stonestreet, recorded a television advertisement for Deloitte, a company profiting from the policies he opposes. Deloitte says that Ferguson and Stonestreet brought "their characteristically contentious—and hilarious—repartee to the ads."
Booz Allen Hamilton: $68,150,278.27 in contracts with ICE during the Trump administration
Since the start of the Trump administration, Booz Allen Hamilton has inked over $68 million in contracts with ICE, including over $33 million directly related to "detention compliance and removals."
In July 2018, Booz Allen Hamilton defended its work with ICE, saying its work did not involve "the separation of children from adults." The company did not elaborate. Nearly 100% of Booz Allen Hamilton's revenue comes from the federal government.
PricewaterhouseCoopers: $5,238,048.28 in contracts with ICE during the Trump administration
Since January 2017, PricewaterhouseCoopers has collected over $5 million in contracts with ICE, all of which directly related to "detention compliance and removals." When its relationship with ICE was scrutinized in 2018, the company refused to comment.
McKinsey takes a different approach
The consulting giant McKinsey announced in July 2018 that it would no longer do business with ICE. McKinsey "will not, under any circumstances, engage in any work, anywhere in the world, that advances or assists policies that are at odds with our values,” Kevin Sneader, the firm's managing partner said.
For companies like Deloitte, Booz Allen Hamilton, and PricewaterhouseCoopers, McKinsey's decision to forgo business with ICE has been a money-making opportunity.
Stock photo models for Trump
The Trump campaign is spending significant resources on highly manipulative online ads designed to make it appear that he has support from key demographic groups.
Here is how it works. Trump is not polling well among women in general and young women in particular. So it is running an advertisement on Facebook and Google featuring "Tracey" a young woman who is presented as a big Trump fan.
"President Trump is doing a great job. I could not ask for a better president of the United States of American," Tracey says as we watch her stroll across the beach.
But Tracey is not an actual Trump supporter. She is a model from a video, "Summer beach beauty walking," purchased on istockphoto.com.
The ad does include a disclaimer: "Actor portrayal. Actual testimonial." But the disclaimer is shown for a split second in an extremely tiny font.
Notably, there is no evidence that whoever gave the "actual testimonial" is a young woman, which is the clear point of the ad.
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